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News :: International
'NARCO-TERRORISM' TRAININGS BACKDOOR ENTRY FOR U.S. TROOPS, SAYS BAYAN MUNA SOLON
28 Sep 2004
Bayan Muna representative Joel G. Virador today said that ongoing narco-terrorism and anti-narcotics trainings in the country involving U.S. troops are no more than "backdoor entries" for the latter.
FROM IMC-PHILIPPINES

Bayan Muna representative Joel G. Virador today said that ongoing narco-terrorism and anti-narcotics trainings in the country involving U.S. troops are no more than "backdoor entries" for the latter.

He cited the case of Davao City where at least five members of the U.S. Army gave anti-narcotics training to a 56-member team from the Philippine National Police (PNP), Philippine Army, and Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA). "The rules governing these so-called anti-narcotics trainings are unclear. What is clear, however, is that the war on terrorism-- now extending itself into a war against narco-terrorism -- is being used as pretext for the entry of foreign troops in the country," the solon said.

Virador added that joint RP-US military exercises, including so- called anti-narcotics training, must be seen in the overall context of US economic and political interests in the Asia-Pacific region.

"It would be the height of political naivete to think that these are plain exercises and trainings for the enhancement of our Philippine military. The US is using the country, especially war-torn Mindanao, as spring board of military power because of its strategic location. The US also has numerous business interests in the island which it needs to secure," he said.

Virador added, "The military hardware the US soldiers supposedly leave behind after each training are no more than execess defense articles of the world's self-acknowledged global cop. They are peanuts compared to the gains they get from maintaining their presence here," he said.

The solon also expressed support to the overwhelming campaign against joint RP-US military exercises especially in Mindanao. He cited the case of the Davao City local government which has expressed firm opposition to the conduct of Balikatan exercises in the region.

"Whether they stage the Balikatan in North Cotabato, Davao or Sarangani, Mindanaoans will make their opposition to these exercises known," Virador said.

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